Diabetes mellitus in dogs normally necessitates two daily insulin injections as well as a dietary adjustment. Although a dog may spend a day or two without insulin and not experience a crisis, this should not be done on a regular basis; medication should be viewed as part of the dog's daily routine. Long-acting insulins are recommended for treating diabetes in dogs because they reduce the need for daily injections.
Diabetes is not treatable in dogs, and the great majority of diabetic dogs require insulin injections for the rest of their lives if diagnosed. However, some owners are able to control their dog's blood glucose levels with diet alone. In these cases, the dog may be said to have recovered insulin sensitivity.
If your dog has been diagnosed with diabetes, you'll need to understand how to manage this condition. Monitoring your dog's blood sugar level regularly is the key to preventing complications from developing. Also important is ensuring that his diet contains sufficient carbohydrates to keep his blood sugar level stable. Finally, it's important to take your dog to see a vet at least once per year for an examination. This will allow the vet to check on the state of your dog's kidneys, eyes, and other organs and make any necessary recommendations regarding care.
It is possible to recover insulin sensitivity in dogs who have previously been diagnosed with diabetes. These dogs can then become hypoglycemic (low blood sugar) conditions or hyperglycemic (high blood sugar) conditions depending on what they eat. It is important for such dogs to receive adequate nutrition and exercise so that they do not suffer from energy deficits which could lead to brain damage or even death.
Between meals and injections, the body is continually processing food and insulin. Most dogs thrive on a consistent feeding plan of 2-3 meals each day. In general, injections should be administered every 12 hours. Consult your veterinarian about getting your dog on the correct schedule.
If you are giving your dog insulin, there are several factors that will determine how much he or she needs to eat at each mealtime. Body weight, activity level, age, and type of diabetes all play a role in what dose of insulin will be required. If your dog's blood sugar levels are not checked regularly, it's impossible to know how much insulin he or she is needing at any given time. Your vet can help you develop an insulin protocol that is right for your dog.
The amount of food needed to sustain a normal life-style for a dog with diabetes varies depending on his or her weight. Here's an example: A 10-pound (4.5 kg) dog who exercises regularly requires 495 calories per day to maintain its weight. This amount increases as the dog gets older. A 60-pound (27 kg) dog who does not exercise requires more than 9,000 calories per day to keep its weight stable.
Diets for dogs with diabetes contain less carbohydrate and more protein and fat than ordinary canine diets. This helps reduce the risk of developing certain complications associated with the disease.
Dogs Can Live a Normal Life Despite Diabetes Despite having diabetes, most dogs may live a totally normal life. Dogs with diabetes can be happy and healthy if they follow a proper food and exercise program, as well as get regular insulin shots. Changes to the diet or medication regimen may be needed when you first diagnose your dog with diabetes, but once these changes are made, his blood sugar should be closely monitored by your veterinarian.
If you have a dog who is older than 10 years old, has a family history of diabetes, or is very overweight, he may already be at risk for developing this disease. It is important to recognize early signs of diabetes in your dog so that the problem can be resolved before it becomes serious. Many dogs with diabetes will go into kidney failure within five years of being diagnosed if they do not receive treatment.
Diabetes can lead to many problems including blindness, nerve damage, and limb amputation. However new treatments allow many dogs to live longer and more comfortable lives. The key is to pay close attention to your dog's diet and exercise routine and take him to the vet for checkups. If you notice changes in his behavior or appetite, contact your vet immediately.